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St Benedict’s to be relocated*

By Renée Smith,

Efforts are being made to relocate St Benedict’s College, La Romaine.

The 62-year-old structure is severely compromised with the building having outgrown its population of students, forcing a relocation says chaplain Msgr Christian Pereira.

The parish priest of St Benedict’s RC, La Romaine told the Catholic News students are “cramped” and there is “no real breathing space” on the compound.

Over the years, the structural integrity of the college has degraded and worsening the problems was the 6.9 earthquake which occurred on August 21, 2018.

Listing some of the issues, Msgr Pereira said, “The school’s auditorium is partially the cafeteria, serving other functions as well. Main buildings of the school have been affected and for a while classes and school events had to be held at the Parish Hall.”

He hoped the relocation will elevate the school back to the vision of its founding father Dom Basil Matthews OSB who established the college in 1956. Msgr Pereira stressed, “The holistic education of our young men needs a different kind of environment.”

Provisions for the new location is expected by the Government who had promised some 14 acres of land at a different location. The present St Benedict’s institution is the property of the Archdiocese of Port of Spain and will not be neglected. “It will be best used by the Archdiocese for additional educational facilities.” Msgr Pereira noted.

He has been meeting with the Catholic Education Board of Management, teachers and past pupils of the school who will help move the vision forward. Land Assessment and Vision committees were formed to execute a cost-benefit analysis and examine the proposed cost while the latter will review and develop a vision for the new educational institution.